The study was designed to analyze the comparative profitability of alternate shrimp-crop farming and to determine the socioeconomic and environmental impacts of shrimp farming in coastal areas of Bangladesh. In shrimp growing areas, four different farming systems were studied - alternate shrimp-rice farming, alternate shrimp-salt farming, and year round shrimp or rice production in the shrimp farming areas. It was found that, combined economic returns from producing shrimp and salt was substantially higher than those of combined returns from shrimp and rice production under alternate shrimp-rice farming system. Shrimp and rice were also produced individually as year round crop. In year round shrimp farming per hectare production of shrimp was higher compared to the production of shrimp under alternate shrimp-crop farming but in terms of farm income, farmers producing year round shrimp earned lower income than the combined income earned from shrimp and salt production. Under the present farming system, farm income from year round rice production within the vicinity of shrimp growing areas was the lowest among the four different farming systems in the study areas. The results of the study clearly indicate that shrimp farming and other related activities accrued socioeconomic benefits to the shrimp farmers. The coastal communities including women had chances to improve their socioeconomic condition through their direct and indirect involvement in coastal aquaculture. The study revealed that the existing unplanned shrimp culture has adversely affected the production of cereal crops and vegetables, trees and plantation, poultry and livestock in shrimp growing areas. Shrimp farming has also negative effects on coastal environment and agro-ecosystem, which have moderately changed the bio-diversity in the study areas.


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